Medical Laboratory Technicians perform routine medical laboratory tests and operate diagnostic laboratory equipment under the supervision of Medical Laboratory Scientists and Pathologists.

Also known as: Medical Laboratory Technical Officer.

A formal qualification in laboratory technology, skills or techniques is needed to work as a Medical Laboratory Technician. VET (Vocational Education and Training) and university are both common study pathways for Medical Laboratory Technicians.

Tasks

  • Operates equipment used in diagnosing and monitoring disorders of hearing, the heart, kidneys and nervous system.
  • Undertakes and assists with medical analytical procedures and assists anaesthetists and surgical teams.
  • Records the electrical activity of the heart, from which the heart rate is measured and pattern and rhythm is interpreted.
  • Prepares and stains slides and tissue sections to study the cells of blood for histological examination.
  • Performs diagnostic tests on tissues and fluids and analyses the chemical constituents of blood, urine, faeces and tissues.
  • Tests for diseases by looking for the presence of antibodies and the products of immune response in samples.
  • Sets up, checks and maintains operating theatres, and anaesthetic workstations, life support machines and associated equipment.
  • Refers prescriptions to pharmacists and assists in preparing medications.

All Medical Technicians

  • $1,159 Weekly Pay
  • Stable Future Growth
  • Lower unemployment Unemployment

Medical Laboratory Technicians

  • 6,200 workers Employment Size
  • High skill Skill level rating
  • 62% Full-Time Full-Time Share
  • 40 hours Average full-time
  • 39 years Average age
  • 74% female Gender Share

The number of people working as Medical Laboratory Technicians (in their main job) stayed about the same over 5 years:
from 6,200 in 2011 to 6,200 in 2016.

  • Size: This is a small occupation.
  • Location: Medical Laboratory Technicians work in many regions of Australia.
  • Industries: Most work in Health Care and Social Assistance; Professional, Scientific and Technical Services; and Education and Training.
  • Full-time: Many work full-time (62%, similar to the average of 66%).
  • Hours: Full-time workers spend around 40 hours per week at work (compared to the average of 44 hours).
  • Age: The average age is 39 years (compared to the average of 40 years).
  • Gender: 74% of workers are female (compared to the average of 48%).

Employment Outlook

Number of Workers

No data is available for the selected graph for this Occupation.

Weekly Earnings

Weekly Earnings (Before Tax)

No data is available for the selected graph for this Occupation.

Main Industries

Main Employing Industries (% Share)

Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Industries are based on the Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC 06).
Main Employing IndustriesIndustry (% share)
Health Care and Social Assistance87.5
Professional, Scientific and Technical Services5.0
Education and Training3.0
Public Administration and Safety1.7
Other Industries2.8

States and Territories

  • NSW

  • VIC

  • QLD

  • SA

  • TAS

  • NT

  • ACT

Employment by State and Territory (% Share)

Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Share of workers across Australian States and Territories, in this job compared to the all jobs average.
StateMedical Laboratory TechniciansAll Jobs Average
NSW35.531.6
VIC18.225.6
QLD18.820.0
SA10.87.0
WA12.810.8
TAS1.62.0
NT0.71.0
ACT1.71.9

Age Profile

Age Profile (% Share)

Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Age profile of workers in this job compared to the all jobs average.
Age BracketMedical Laboratory TechniciansAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
15-190.9-5.05.0
20-2411.0-9.39.3
25-3427.9-22.922.9
35-4421.7-22.022.0
45-5420.1-21.621.6
55-599.9-9.09.0
60-645.8-6.06.0
65 and Over2.7-4.24.2

Education Level

Highest Level of Education (% Share)

Source: ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Highest qualification completed by workers in this job (in any field of study). Qualifications needed by new workers might be different from the qualifications of workers already in the job.
Type of QualificationMedical Laboratory TechniciansAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate7.7-10.110.1
Bachelor degree34.2-21.821.8
Advanced Diploma/Diploma25.6-11.611.6
Certificate III/IV10.0-21.121.1
Year 1215.6-18.118.1
Year 112.5-4.84.8
Year 10 and below4.4-12.512.5

A formal qualification in laboratory technology, skills or techniques is needed to work as a Medical Laboratory Technician. VET (Vocational Education and Training) and university are both common study pathways for Medical Laboratory Technicians.

Membership with the Australian Institute of Medical Scientists may be useful.

Thinking about study or training?

Before starting a course, check it will provide you with the skills and qualifications you need.

  • Search and compare thousands of higher education courses, and their entry requirements from different institutions across Australia at Course Seeker website.
  • Compare undergraduate and postgraduate student experiences and outcomes on the QILT website.
  • Compare Vocational Education and Training (VET) courses, providers and student outcomes on the My Skills website.
  • You might be interested in Health Industry and Laboratory Operations VET training pathways on the AAPathways website.

Or check out related courses on Job Outlook.

Useful links and resources


The course listings on this page are provided by Good Education Group.

Employers look for Medical Technicians who have good people skills, a high attention to detail and are accurate.

Filter Skills & Knowledge

Knowledge

These are important topics, subjects or knowledge areas.

  1. Chemistry

    63% Skill level

    Chemical composition, structure, and properties. How chemicals are made, used, mixed, and can change.

  2. Biology

    62% Skill level

    Plant and animal organisms, their tissues, cells, functions, how they rely on and work with each other and the environment.

  3. Customer and personal service

    61% Skill level

    Understanding customer needs, providing good quality service, and measuring customer satisfaction.

  4. Mathematics

    59% Skill level

    Arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics.

  5. English language

    56% Skill level

    English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.

Occupational Information Network
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
The skills and importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 29-2012.00 - Medical and Clinical Laboratory Technicians.

Learn about the daily activities, and physical and social demands faced by workers. Explore the values and work styles that workers rate as most important.

Filter Work Environment

Demands

The physical and social demands workers face most often are shown below.

  1. Face-to-face discussions

    99% Important

    Talk with people face-to-face.

  2. Indoors, heat controlled

    98% Important

    Work indoors with access to heating or cooling.

  3. Being exact or accurate

    97% Important

    Be very exact or highly accurate.

  4. Wear common protective or safety equipment

    95% Important

    Wear equipment like safety shoes, glasses, gloves, hard hats or life jackets.

  5. Telephone

    93% Important

    Talk on the telephone.

Occupational Information Network
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
The skills and importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 29-2012.00 - Medical and Clinical Laboratory Technicians.

go to top